Wednesday, November 9, 2016

November Highlights

Dear Parents ~
It was wonderful meeting with you to discuss your child's progress at conferences.  We will be having a Celebration of Learning on November 16th in conjunction with the Thanksgiving Feast.  Our Celebration of Learning will be held from 12:00-12:30 in our classroom.  Your child will be sharing different technology tools they use, as well as, some of their work.  The Thanksgiving Feast for our class will be from 12:30-12:50.  It is our hope that you will be able to join us in this celebration.  Please let me know if you have any questions.

Reading:
In reading workshop, students have been asking questions (thick vs. thin) and connecting new learning to that knowledge as they read a variety of texts. Students have been reading leveled texts and chapter booksThey are using sticky notes to annotate their text.  Students are asking questions, activating schema, recognizing unfamiliar/unknown vocabulary, inferring, and identifying new learnings.  Students have been working on developing written responses to higher level questions.  They are being asked to respond to the questions, explain their thinking, and reference the text using page numbers and examples.  I am proud of students' effort and work completed so far. These strategies are used cross curricular.


Math: 
We have finished Unit 2 (Data).  We are currently working on Unit 3 which focuses on multiplication and division.  The students are learning to break apart multiplication problems, solving division problems, and working on strategies we use to solve multiplication and division problems.  They are showing and explaining their thinkingEach student has the opportunity to explore a variety of different math games related to the current unit by accessing the google classroom I set up as well as logging on to Pearsonrealize.com and playing the math games introduced throughout the unit. 

Students will be completing a Thanksgiving performance task where they will be asked to prepare a meal for a family of five.  This will include a plan, set budget, creating a menu using store ads, and a financial spreadsheet. Students will create a menu that showcases each courseThey will need to include an itemized bill/receipt that provides an accurate account for all funds spend. Students will be using addition and multiplication.

Writing:
Students continue to work on opinion essays.  They are in the process of editing/revising and typing a draft in Google Docs. Students will show their work during our Celebration of Learning.  It is exciting to see the growth that is being made along the way.

Social Studies:
We have learned about Colorado's geography. Students will be completing a performance task regarding real estate and if the geographic location is suitable for a family based on the families specified criteria. 

Students are currently learning about the Native American groups in Colorado (Utes, Cheyenne, and Arapaho).  They are taking notes on their learnings and comparing the groups we discuss.  

Technology:
Students are using technology on a daily basis.  We have been using Google Classroom for different reading and writing activities.  Students are using Seesaw as a reflective tool to show and explain their thinking. In the next couple weeks, I will be co-teaching with Mrs. Fleet. We will focus on creating infographics.  Together, we will guide students through how they can use an infographic to create meaning for others about the connection between the 4C's and digital tools. 

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

September 15, 2015

Dear Parents ~

We are off to a great start and I have thoroughly enjoyed working with your child.
 
Reading:
In reading workshop, students have been activating their background knowledge and connecting new learning to that knowledge as they read a variety of nonfiction texts. Students have been reading leveled texts and making meaningful/deep connections to their reading. They have been working hard to explain how their connections help them better understand the text using evidence from the text to support their thinking. Within the next week, we will begin using the thinking strategy asking questions.  These strategies are used cross curricular.


Math: 
We have finished Unit 1 (arrays, factors, multiples, prime/composite).  We will begin Unit 2 which will focus on data.  The students will learn how to create survey questions, gather data, and represent data using a variety of graphs. We have also been using the Chrome books to differentiate and enrich our learning. The kids have had the opportunity to explore a variety of different math games related to the current unit by accessing the google classroom I set up as well as logging on to Pearsonrealize.com and playing the math games introduced throughout the unit.

Writing:
Students continue to work on their realistic fiction story.  They are in the process of editing/revising and typing a draft in Google Docs. Please have them show you their piece.  It is exciting to see the growth that is being made along the way.

Science:
In Science we have been learning about ecosystems.  The class has learned about biotic and abiotic factors, predator/prey relationships, the different types of ecosystems, and all about physical and behavioral adaptations,food webs and the relationship between biotic and abiotic factors within an ecosystem.  This unit of study will culminate with the creation of a brochure.  The students will select an endangered animal and demonstrate their learning of the unit as they detail the animal's habitat, diet, its place in the food chain, its adaptations, as well as create a call for action asking for steps to be taken to help take the animal off the endangered list.  Please remember to sign your child up for our Cheyenne Mountain Zoo field trip on September 30th.  You may do this on RevTrak.

Technology:
Students are using technology on a daily basis.  We have been using Google Classroom for different reading and science activities (Think Sheets).  Please have your child show you.  We will also be starting to use Seesaw.  Students will be able to use this in any content area to show and explain their thinking. More information will be coming your way. Next week, I will be co-teaching with Mrs. Fleet. This will be part of our science unit on ecosystems.  We will focus on fossils.  We will utilize google classroom as well as teach the kids how to use multiple tabs as they investigate a mystery.  The premise of the unit is a based on a mystery that the kinds must solve regarding found fossils.  They will study a variety of texts while gathering clues about where the fossil could have been discovered.  Once they have concluded  where the fossils was discovered they will create a google doc which they will share with the class.  The is google doc will explain how they came to their conclusion. 


October 6th will be the Digger Dash.  Our class selected the name Mrs. Kramer's Owls.  This year there will be no flair.  We may select a color to wear as a class.

Please let me know if you have any question.

 

Monday, July 18, 2016

Welcome Parents and Students!

Dear Parents and Student ~
 
            I would like to introduce myself, and welcome your child to 4th grade!  My name is Kathryn Kramer, and I will be your child’s 4th grade teacher for the 2016/2017 school year.  I am looking forward to our year together with great anticipation and excitement!
         I have been teaching for the past twenty-three years and have a Master’s degree from Regis University.   I have taught 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades here in Douglas County, as well as in Littleton Public Schools.  It is a pleasure to be a part of Gold Rush Elementary School.
         Teaching is my passion!  I am excited to come to work each day, teach all curricular areas, and help students make connections with what they are learning in the classroom and in their daily lives.  I hope the enthusiasm and love of learning that I bring to my classroom carries over to my students each day.
         My husband, Tom, and I moved to Parker seventeen years ago.  We absolutely love the Parker community. Tom and I have two children.  Logan is 15 and in high school.  Jeffrey is 11 and going into sixth grade.  Our family enjoys hockey, swimming, bicycling, water skiing, snow skiing, and camping.  We love spending time together as a family.
         Fourth grade is a year of tremendous growth, increased responsibility, and an opportunity for your child to think critically.  My goal is to help your child become more responsible and independent, while providing a learning environment that is rich in content and conducive to your child’s needs.  I will work with your child throughout the school year to provide them with the tools and knowledge needed for them to meet these expectations and achieve success.  Together, I hope to create an environment with open communication, the ability to take risks, and one that encourages life long learning. My door is always open.  If at any time you have questions or concerns, please let me know as soon as possible in order to minimize miscommunication.
Sincerely,
Kathryn Kramer